This morning at 3:50 am, the world changed for me. Rachel’s labor began yesterday with steady contractions. Rachel and Nick stayed home until those contractions were about four minutes apart. Nick kept us informed with text updates; they were at the hospital by midnight. We followed and spent the next four hours sitting in the hall outside their room, while inside Rachel labored, Nick assisted, and the doula encouraged. Nurses came and went. We overheard snatches of conversation. Allen read. I sewed. Labor began in earnest. We heard one nurse say, “Don’t push. I’d really like you to wait for Dr. Grimm,” and we knew Leda Rose was on her way.
I would rather Rachel have a visit from a stork or find this dearly wished for baby under a cabbage leaf. I heard her groan and yes, curse, without being able to comfort her. Allen and I held hands. And then we heard that unforgettable sound – Leda Rose’s first cry, robust, demanding, definitely herself. Our little granddaughter was here. After a while, we heard Nick say, “She looks like my father.” Since Oral is tall, gangly, and with the most amazing pointy head, we were not reassured. Then Rachel cried out with a hint of amazement, “She’s doing it!” (We guessed she was breastfeeding.)
After a time, we entered the sanctum and saw our little grand-daughter for the very first time, so tiny, rosy pink, nestled lovingly in my daughter’s arms, Nick’s face filled with joy. Seven pounds 11 ounces. One perfect ear peeking out from a jaunty yellow hat. Happily grubbing away at both hands stuffed in her little mouth. At that moment, the world truly changed for me. I am already thankful for every moment I will share with this new little person, Leda Rose.